CMC – The Trinidad and Tobago Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) believes an estimated 182 people here are involved in financing terrorist activities worldwide, the Minister in the Ministry of the Attorney General and Legal Affairs, Stuart Young, has said.
Young, speaking at the weekly Cabinet meeting on Thursday, told reporters the Trinidad and Tobago nationals may be involved in financing the activities of terrorist organisations such as the Islamic State (ISIS).
“What the FIU has picked up in their STRs (Suspicious Transaction Reports) and SARs (Suspicious Activity Reports) is that approximately 182 Trinidad and Tobago citizens, we suspect, may be involved in the financing of terrorist activities,” Young said.
“And at the end of the 2016 reporting period the FIU’s intelligence has revealed 182 citizens of Trinidad and Tobago being suspected of being involved in terrorist activities. Approximately 182 Trinidad and Tobago citizens may be involved in the financing of terrorist activities.”
Young said the total monetary value of the 739 STRs submitted to the FIU for this year was TT$805.5 million (One TT dollar =US$0.16 cents) representing a 127 per cent increase in the STR submissions to the FIU in 2015.
Young told reporters that the STRs and SARs could involve banks, financial institutions, private members clubs, attorneys and real estate agents and that the focus is on, “certain countries in the Middle East and near to the Middle East.”
He said the government had obtained court orders under the Anti- Terrorism Act this year, “to have certain persons declared terrorists and freeze their accounts et cetera, including ISIS and all of the bodies that we know of from the United Nations”.
Young said local law enforcement agencies have been collaborating with their international partners on countries such as Syria, Turkey and the United Kingdom as some jurisdictions where terrorist financing could be taking place.